FAQ: How to Add a New Location Mode, or Manually Change from One Location Mode to Another (Classic App)

Thanks for that. Once I login and edit the mode all it will let me do is
edit it’s name. What am I missing?

Yes, that’s it! what were you looking to do?

Back when I first made my custom modes a year or so ago I seem to recall I
could specify specific devices that were part of those modes. In the IDE I
don’t see any configuration options other than renaming it.

That’s been true for about a year and a half. See the first sentence of the first post in this thread:

on September 15, 2016, an update was released to the android and iOS SmartThings mobile apps which removed the ability to add a new mode through the app. Hopefully this was just a glitch and it will be re-added soon. Meanwhile, you can still add a new mode through the IDE. Instructions in the following thread.

iOS 2.2.0 - Release Notes - #29 by JDRoberts

Follow that link, and it will tell you how to add a new mode through the IDE.

But it’s never been specific to individual devices, just locations ( Hub). You can add a new one or delete an existing one or rename an existing one. But once you’ve given it a name, that’s all there is to it, there are no additional parameters.

If you are using smart home monitor, that does let you assign specific devices to specific armed states, but there’s never been anything similar for modes.

I had hoped that it wasn’t still the case. Thanks for confirming. I have
been able to get the same functionality in the IDE so far.

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The documentation, How do Modes work in SmartThings Classic, is circular at best. Nowhere does it define the functional differences between Modes, nor does this thread help clear anything up.

The link I just mentioned, as well as this thread, are at the top of Safari Google hits at this time. Where the heck is the meat of this matter and why isn’t it easy to find?

The first thing to know is that there are two completely different kinds of modes and they work very differently from each other. One kind is for your home automation rules and the other kind is for your security rules.

We had the ones for home automation first, so a lot of the documentation doesn’t even discuss the ones for security. That was true for this FAQ at the time that it was written.

Location modes are used for home automation rules

Location Modes are definitely confusing. And weird. But useful.

The first thing to know is that there is no functional difference between them. They are just arbitrary values that you yourself define. You could call them grape, banana, and orange, and they would work the same way.

They don’t have any real meaning until you start using them in automations.

The easiest way to explain them is through examples. The following examples are all from the classic app, not the new app, but they should give you the concept.

Security modes represent the armed state for smart home monitor

If you are asking about the “security modes” that are used with smart home monitor then those have a very different structure. They are pre-defined as away, armed stay, and home. You can’t add more and you can’t change how they are used.

The easiest way to understand those is the following thread (the topic title is a clickable link). You will have already read the routines FAQ that it links to, so you don’t have to go around that particular circle again. But it will discuss how the security modes are used and how they differ with the ADT hub model.

I’m sorry if all of this seems like a long way around, it is, and it has to do with the fact that the system has grown over time and then they gave some new features the same name as some old features. :scream:

(If somebody wants to write a new modes FAQ for the new app, that would be very welcome. I can’t do it because the new app is not voice accessible.


Thanks, JD. I started out with the modern ST app and that’s caused more confusion than if I had gone through the classic, first.

So, we have Scenes, Modes, Routines and Automations. I’ve already run into scenarios where Routines and Automations step on each other’s toes, so Routines need to go. I’m assuming this is the intent with the new ability to associate a Mode with a Scene, or is this the SHM modes being associated with Scenes? Oh well, Millennials killed documentation – we’ve known that for a long time… Test it till we guess it, I suppose.

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Scenes in the classic app were pretty much your standard home automation lighting scenes. Scenes in the new app are more like routines in the classic app.

Remember with modes in either app that there are two kinds: location modes and security modes. They have very different characteristics.

Pretty sure you have to do it in the IDE. But isn’t that also true for the classic app at this point? See the very first post in this thread.


You can only edit locations in the new app at this point > main screen > more (three dots in upper right of screen) and touch Manage Home. As @JDRoberts pointed out, you need to go to IDE to create new locations

Does ST still tell us what the current mode is? I havent seen it in years.

It is hidden well

Home page

Top your location at the top

Tap manage location

Tap your hub name

3rd option down

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Thank you. Seems like that would be visible on the favorites page doesn’t it?

Or tap on 3 dots, manage location then location mode

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So you can ! … and @Ron_M there is sooo much not right, its just another thing :roll_eyes:

If you have a hub it is easy to make a tile to display your Location Mode. And if you make it a favorite it will show up on the favorites page

Use @Mariano_Colmenarejo Aplicaciones Virtuales (formerly Mc Virtual Appliance) and selected “textfield 5 field” to create a virtual device.

Leave all fields in the new device blank. Then write 3 Automations to set field 1 to Away, Home or Night based on location mode.



should also mention ST API Browser where you can see current Location mode with the ability to create/delete modes:


A post was merged into an existing topic: SmartThings API Browser+ … Now Available to All